Akechi Denki: Interview in SM Secret Club (1997)

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Akechi Denki: Interview in SM Secret Club (1997)

In 1997, the magazine SM秘密俱楽部 (SM Secret Club) published an in-depth interview with Akechi Denki.

In 2009, NuitdeTokyo made a translation into English of this interview for Osada Steve’s website TokyoBound: [ http://www.tokyobound.com/blog/?p=245 ]

I have been looking for this magazine for quite some time, and recently was able to get my hands on it and add it to my collection.

I asked NuitdeTokyo and Osada Steve for permission to republish the translation of the interview here on the KinbakuBooks blog, which they generously allowed me to.

Thank you!

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Introduction from TokyoBound

The following interview is from volume 6 of SM 秘密俱楽部 (SM Secret Club) published in 1997. It used to be a relatively minor player within the Tsukasa Shobo Publishing portfolio – ranking behind magazine titles like SM Fan and SM Frontier, that left their mark on Showa era SM publishing.

After a messy change of ownership, Tsukasa Shobo went bankrupt in 2007. The interviewer for the article signs as Tajima Osamu, a fairly common name. An internet search hasn’t come up with any other SM-related works under that name.

Interestingly enough, the article includes mention of Osada Seminar pioneered by Osada Eikichi .

Thanks to NuitdeTokyo (NdT for short) we can bring you now the English translation of this interview. Next to Master K, NdT is probably the most avid collector of Japanese SM literature. In the past, NdT has discovered another Akechi Denki interview (from ca. 1976) and kindly shared it with us here.

For those unfamiliar with the who’s who’s of the Japanese Shibari and Kinbaku world, both Osada Eikichi (長田英吉) and Akechi Denki (明智伝鬼) are considered grandmasters of the art – the former having passed away in 2001, the latter in 2005. The probably last ever interview with Akechi Denki Shi was conducted by Osada Steve (長田スティーブ) for Steve’s own magazine, Fetish Japan, and for SM Sniper, one of the largest surviving SM magazine players, until it folded in January 2009.

Before we now get to the actual story, a few words by NuitdeTokyo:

Throughout the translation I have used the word ‘fetish’ for what the Japanese like to call ‘mania’ because I feel the present usage of the word in Japanese is closer to ‘fetish’ than to ‘mania(c)’. I have also added some notes inside the text (indicated by NdT). The original article also had notes, but I have incorporated their contents in the main corpus.

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Akechi Denki interviewed by Tajima Osamu, in ”SM Secret Club” (1997)

The first magazine specializing in SM and hentai [pervert] material was the highly regarded Kitan Clubwhich started in 1948. Its long-time editor was the legendary Minomura Ko [NdT: please refer to Master K’s excellent book The Beauty of Kinbaku for additional information] who contributed in several ways to this special publication. Alongside with him, many people – some famous, others not – may be called the first generation of post-war Japanese SM. Akechi Denki may then be called part of the second generation.

The first generation was strongly influenced by the war. For example, an enemy ship sank Minomura Ko’s ship and he was left adrift in the Pacific Ocean for many days. It was then, where he promised himself that if he ever made it back alive, “from now on, I will do the things I like”. Also, the author has directly met someone who was working in China as a spy for the communist guerilla, was arrested by the army and subjected to unspeakable torture. The spirit of resistance he nurtured in these conditions blossomed into non-orthodox eroticism. These are people who “have seen” the space between life and death. When compared to the “young” people entering SM from the fashion side, there is a rather wide generation gap.

For the second generation, death was a rare encounter, a seldom seen acquaintance. But obviously, hunger and starvation were there . . .

“At primary school, several levels were crammed into one classroom. When it was time to eat, several students were customarily left alone, as they did not bring a lunch box; they had to do with a glass of water. As for me, it was mainly just rice with a pickled prune on top, but I saw several students in my school year die. At that time, it was nothing strange.”

The family of Akechi Shi was a well-respected family of craftsmen. Thanks to that, its environment was comparatively privileged. But at this time, the term of “war” could still be applied to a food supply situation, which, in an unseen way, was gnawing away at the developing bodies of the young generation. So, several times, Akechi Shi was suspended between life and death. At the same time, as we shall see later, his family was getting closer to financial ruin.

“At the time I was growing. I had an extremely strong interest in the body of women. I had this girl next door to whom I had been close since kindergarten. Together we often played doctor. The fact she did not have a male sex was very strange, as if it had been reduced to a pebble. I did some fairly wild things. After that I was very much attracted to the female bottom. I often peeped into the toilets from the small windows there. I knew in detail all the neighboring public toilets.” (laughs)

While Akechi Shi was already showing in his young years a good deal of lusty curiosity, the encounter with the magazine Kitan Clubtook place while he was in his third year of primary school.

“When I saw this at the old book seller next door, it was an experience I would remember all my life. Flipping the pages, I could see women being tied up, ill-treated, it was shock strong enough to burn my body. As I was clinching my pocket money to purchase the magazine, the shop owner barked at me, “This is not something for kids. What is your name?” and I was forced to write my name and my address (laugh). I was distressed for a moment, and thought of several strategies. A shop close by was not good. And I contemplated asking one of my uncles. Finally, I grabbed my bicycle and went to a book rental shop in the next town and rented a copy of Kitan Club without getting any remark from the shop owner. As soon as I got out of the shop, I started on my bike as fast as I could.”

The young first-time reader of Kitan Club matured rapidly and his first hands-on bondage was in his second year of junior high school. His partner was a younger girl who was living close to the family home of his mother.

“As we had a good relationship, until the third year of junior high school we used to take our bath together. We would play doctor. I would tie her up and make her roll on the ground. But once, we were surprised by her parents and they started chasing me (laugh).”

Be it with a classmate in kindergarten, or with a childhood friend, it appears that Akechi Shi was a “special person” since the youngest of age.

For people who are into fetish, they are doing it as a strictly personal thing, not even disclosing it to their wife or girl friend, and feeling frustrated, can only envy such an early development. Akechi Shi probably has a special gift for attracting women. Even when only doing an interview, this is something you can feel. The black sunglasses, the clothes, very often black, are not a mere show. There are also no complicated conceptual words to try to throw a cloud of smoke at the listener. Akechi Shi tells in a soft voice of its past hard times, stories, which would normally cause people to get very tense. These stories are so interesting that they draw strongly the attention of the listener.

When reading the stories in Ladies Magazine [at that time, Akechi Shi was running a series where average female readers would volunteer to have a first-time SM experience and be tied up], one can only empathize with the amateur volunteer who says, “If it is him, I will let him use my body as he wishes”.

“In SM there is a relation of trust. If the partner does not fully entrust her body with a complete peace of mind that is when accidents do occur. When I am performing shows, I tie rather hard. Of course, I attach the utmost importance to the limits of the partner. As soon as it is finished, I softly embrace the partner while telling her something like “you have been very courageous”. At that time, the thread of the kinbaku snaps, and the model, while shedding big tears, nestles herself against me. At this time, the girl’s expression is really cute.”

Upon hearing this, one can catch a glimpse of the stance of Akechi Shi towards women.

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When Akechi Shi was in high school, he tried to join the Kendo club of the school but was refused after taking a medical check-up. The rheumatic fever he contracted when he was young was not completely cured. Upon reflection, it was a bad omen.

At the same time, the businesses his father was involved in failed completely and his father disappeared. The house was mortgaged and in fact the entire family was dispersed. Akechi Shi himself was forced to enter into apprenticeship as a house builder. At that time, apprenticeship really meant living as a domestic in the house of the tradesman.

“As we were living in, we had to wake up at 6 am. The atmosphere was a bit like being sent to jail. Of course, it was out of the question to even touch the tools. It was really learning by watching only.”

In the construction business, bullying and bad treatments were also the norm. Up to now there is a scar on the back of Akechi Shi’s right hand, the result of a saw strike by a sempai.

Then, suddenly, when he was 19 he suffered a heart attack. The initial rheumatic fever had left his cardiac valves constricted, which meant that blood was sometimes flowing in reverse direction into the lungs, possibly leading to death.

“When I was told by the doctor that I was not very likely to live beyond thirty years, it all became black in front of my eyes. But being sad would not serve any purpose. I had two younger sisters, which had been entrusted to different relatives. From time to time, I received some letters, there was no explicit mention of loneliness or of things being hard, but one could feel it from the general tone of the letters. And I promised to myself to get again a house where all the family members could live together. If I lived each day with double intensity, even though I may die when I am 30, it would be the same as dying when I was sixty. Very simply, the trick was not to sleep.”

So, he worked while allowing his suffering body only 3 hours of sleep every day. He had to learn his work faster than the others. Soon he turned independent, recruited some available workers, and he became himself manager and bookkeeper. At the top, he had more than 100 employees and before he was 30 he managed to build his own house and bring back his mother, his sisters and even his father.

It was at that time that the SM desires started burning again. Using his worn body as an experiment machine, he furthered his studies of shibari by observing and copying.

When doing shibari, where does the weight of the body creates a tension? In Ebi Shibari, up to where can one bend the body? When doing shibari with rubber bands and you want to test the limits, how long can you leave them in place? All this he managed to understand. “I also did tsuri, I also probably did some absurd shibari patterns. I remember that tying oneself creates a strange feeling of psychological intoxication. As such, I think the S and M are two sides of a single entity.”

“Late at night, when the work place was deserted, I also managed to convince a girl working for the company to let herself be tied. As my heart was bad, I was always wearing a sarashi [a roll of white cotton cloth wrapped around the chest] under my clothes. I took it off and used it to tie up the girl (laugh), as the workplace was often a shop or a department store, we used to roam naked among the counters and the mannequins. I devised quite a number of ‘plays’ at that time. Even for the owner of a business, seducing an employee, because of the future consequences did require a certain amount of boldness. I obtained a good understanding of kinbaku.”

Certainly, there is a special mood when Akechi Shi is holding a woman close to his chest. More importantly, for him, at that time, there was no ‘future consequences’.

“Anyway, I kept thinking that I had only 10 years to live. As for me a girlfriend was someone who accepted to die with me. I was only getting 3–4 hours of sleep per week going for long drives with my girlfriend in the middle of the night. Kissing while driving at mad speed along the edge of a cliff. This is one way of trying one’s luck. I was not sure whether this girl would go along. But after, she slipped in the space under the steering wheel to suck my cock while I was driving. While I was getting a blowjob, sleepiness overwhelmed me and before I realized it, I had bumped into a village house. We were both completely naked (laugh).”

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Apart from work and SM another thing was absorbing his attention: billiard. Akechi Shi was playing as a professional gambler and hustler. People were betting like on players the way they bet on horse racing. In that world every evening, tens of thousands of dollars would change hands. If you lose probably someone will squash your hands.

“I had this guy, wearing a soft hat and a muffler, who looked as if he would give you some amphetamine to liven up the atmosphere. As he would be overtaken by sheer energy of the opponent used to increase his concentration power by training bare feet after having spread ice on the ground below the billiard table.”

In fact it was a real world that looked like a movie. Today, billiard is considered a sport. At that time it was supposed to be a gambling activity with a strong scent of underground. “Somehow, it was close to SM,” says Akechi Shi with a wry smile.

Just at that time, Japan entered into its period of high growth. Akechi Shi spent his third decade living at double or treble speed. But this way of living finally exerted its toll.

“As I turned 30, I started spitting blood and was taken to the hospital.”

But when he was fully resting in the hospital, unknown to him, a lot of things were happening. His father who had taken over the management of the company after his son was hospitalized started to quarrel with the employees. Akechi Shi was already married for the first time, but at that time the bad relationship between his wife and his mother and father became apparent. And simultaneously, the business of the company started to turn bad.

“The employees came to the hospital and protested that they could not work under that guy (my father). My father protested. The debts started to accumulate. My wife was crying. Although I was not supposed to receive visitors, there was mayhem around my bed. In the end, my wife left my newborn child in my hospital room and disappeared.”

“I felt obliged to do something which was really beyond my strength at the time; and tottering like a sleep walker, I wandered in the middle of the night around the hospital. Also at that time, I often went through near death experiences. I was floating close to the ceiling of the room. I could even see the top of the heads of the family members in the room.”

Finally through a miracle performed by a very good heart surgeon, Akechi Shi managed to recover. But upon leaving the hospital, his company was bankrupt, he had to relinquish the home he had built.

“My father had again in a hurry entered into dubious speculations. I asked him if he wanted again the family to be dispersed and I started to hit him. But my father, normally stubborn and with strong arms, collapsed on the floor and covered in dirt started to cry. Seeing this I also started to cry. It is only a house. We shall build another one, let’s not worry.”

Akechi Shi stirred himself back into action. It was then the second half of the seventies and at that time he made a fateful encounter.

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Sakurada Denjiro, who was at the time leading an underground theater group named Sekai Gekijo [Theater of the World] had just established GSG Planning to organize SM shows. The year was 1978. Sakurada was a frequent visitor of OSada Seminar, but in terms of SM, he was really an amateur. In short, he was collecting huge amounts of money by enticing people to come and watch a show that was little more than scandalous theater. Seeing this, Akechi Shi was utterly disappointed.

“It was really a bluff. It was only a substitute which could not satisfy people looking for the real thing. At the end of the show I manage to talk to Sakurada. ‘What you are doing is no good,’ I told him. I even sent him a whole bunch of Kitan Club back issues. One thing leading to the other, I ended up joining his theater group as a Shibarishi or supervisor.”

Contrary to expectation, underground theater and SM have an unexpected affinity. Terayama Shuji [head of the underground theater group Tenjosajiki (The Upper Gallery)] used to say that theater is a machine for “physical self-punishment”. In 1970 at the launch party of Kachikujin Yapoo [Yapoo: The Human Cattle] the members of his Tenjosajikigroup staged an SM show [NdT: Kachikujin Yapoo is a very famous anticipation SM novel looking at things from the male sub point of view. Written by Numa Shozo, it was originally published as a series in Kitan Club between 1957 and 1959 and was praised by Mishima Yukio. The first book edition took place in 1970 due to censorship issues and the article refers to the launch party of that edition. There was a French translation in 2007, which received the Sade literary prize in Paris. ISBN 978-2268055664 for volume 1/3. I am not aware of English versions although the book is widely referenced by scholars of Japanese subculture. The term Yapoo has become widely used especially by makers of male sub movies.] Many theater groups also included female actors in gyaku-tsuriand suffering physical punishment as a means of creating performances with a strong visual impact. The Scandalous Theater Group led by Tamai was also one the groups specializing in SM performances. In terms of subculture, it was not, in itself, very surprising that underground theater groups were feeling close to SM as the “front line of sexuality”.

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CSG Planningeagerly introduced many of the plays that Akechi Denki had been imagining over the years. Progressively what had been a secondary project became the main focus. The evenings where, after the theater show, a real shibari show was taking place were very well attended. They became the selling point of CSG shows, starting a tradition that continued until today with Akechi Shi live shows. At the same time, Akechi Shi finally adopted the Akechi Denki name.

“To tie up the very popular actress Kurokawa Mayumi was a really good occasion. She said she really had no M/sub tendencies at all. She was really good looking. As for the shibari part of the shows they did not really have a fixed program, it was more like an ad-lib improvisation based on the feeling of the place, a show where the tying was really constructed live. To show a different tie every time is really, really difficult. But if you feel like doing it, it is really enjoyable,” explains Akechi Shi, reminiscing on his time with CSG Planning.

After the CSG period, Akechi Shi mainly appeared at Tokyo SM, SM Bomber,and SM Suizokan [SM Aquarium]. [These three series of shows resulted from a split of CSG planning.] Among those, the extraordinary performances organized by SM Bomber are still being talked about in fetish circles. There was also an obvious friendship between all these related groups, and Akechi Shi was sometimes invited as a joint guest performer and he could display some rope action of which he was rather proud. In other words, Akechi Shi continued to display energy three times as high as a normal human being, and, given the occasion, he would aggressively deepen his affinity for the fetish world. This is probably a better way of looking at things. Among the fetish people (without limiting oneself to SM) there is often a certain difficulty to act and a feeling of being bottled up which was not at all apparent with Akechi Shi.

If CSG Planning was what made him become Akechi Denki, SM Bomber is the place where he developed and polished his skills.

SM Bomberdissolved itself after 2 years and Akechi Shi could not avoid a quiet period for a short while. But the fans he had accumulated since the time of CSG did not stop there.

“At the time of CSG Planning, there was an Association of the Special Members which was a kind of circle devoted to fetish performances and I took over the duties of that circle. The circle members told me, ‘Please start your activities again,’ and this was the start of the Akechi Denki Kinbaku Photography Club. By the way, many of the members were not so young and could not attend so easily, or had relocated, and there were many setbacks on the budget side. Intended as a way of getting new members and doing live shows again, the Phantom Show was started in 1987. It is the predecessor to the present [NdT: in 1996 when the article was written] Studio Phantom. During the Phantom Shows, I did a number of tsuri-otosu [吊り落とす, suspension drops] which consist in letting the model drop like a stone from a tsurito within a few inches off the ground. When falling, the koshi-nawa bites sharply. When you look at it, it is very impressive. But if you make a mistake, the woman’s head will hit the ground and you have a big accident. The technique requires good timing and full control of the rope tension and not many people can attempt it. There were also times when I would throw bits of concrete at the tied model so she could just dodge them at the last second. The fear-frozen look of the model and the open mouths of the surprised spectators was something I had never enough of. Maybe I went sometimes too far (laugh).”

Although CSG Planningdid close, Akechi Shi did not lose any of his boldness. Right now [i.e. 1996], Akechi Denki and Studio Phantomare doing shows in the well-known SM club called Nakano Queen [NdT: the space still exists today in 2009]. In addition, Akechi Shi is managing five other circles and also takes part in numerous films and videos.

“One of the projects is a collaboration between SM and Noh [NdT: the traditional Japanese mask theater form]. The aim is to show the beauty of Kinbaku in the context of Noh dance. Of course it is a fantasy, as I will not be able to rent the Tokyo National Theater to show my SM, so I have to find a method to make it work. It is still a secret. Please come and see the show.” [NdT: we are not sure to what show Akechi Shi is alluding in that passage.]

Akechi Shi has in the past done joint shows with a pianist. And one can think that those joint performances with a feeling of remix are contributing to open up and expose the possibilities of SM. So we will wish Akechi Shi all the success in his venture.

 

 

Minomura Kou: Poems in SM Kitan (1979 and 1980)

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SM Kitan was an SM magazine published 1975–1980, with lots of high-quality materials. We will be returning to it here on the blog.

In this post, I want to share some poetic texts written by Minomura Kou, accompanied by an illustration (also by Minomura). This was a recurring feature in the magazine. The material I have chosen is from SM Kitan issues #9, #10, #12 (1979), and #1 (1980).

The translations are done by rish. THANK YOU again!

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Hey, one more time 
Terribly sweaty all over the body
Sticky and slimy wet
Never experienced such cruel things
Being pinched and hit…
Being tickled and hurt…
You played around with me mercilessly
You were great tonight
Manly and violent…
Ah, that’s why I was on fire
It was good, it made me go crazy
Hey, mess me up like that one more time

 

 

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Rope-love blues

Ah, the rope… the friction…

If I move my hips even a little

It presses hard on my embarrassing spot

It’s painful…

It’s very tight

”Getting wet, right?”

Please don’t say such embarrassing things

You know I’m very sensitive

You are mean, such a cruel person

Please remove the rope already

No, I want you

Please torment me more with your body!

 

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Sweet cry
Hey, forgive me… Be patient with me…
The arms hurts… and it stops the blood
The tips of the fingers are getting cold
Tops of the boobs too
You treated me so violently
I am throbbing, aching
Hey, it’s enough now, right
It’s hard… and painful…
No, it’s not that I dislike it
It’s not that I dislike it but now, now…
Hold me
Hey, please hold me…

 

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The cry frowned upon
Ah, don’t look
Don’t look at me so much
You do know that I’m shy
You are mean, looking at me from behind
The touch of your breath tickles me
Oh, don’t touch
No, no, no…
I’m too loud, you say, but it’s impossible not to
Because you are too good
Yes, there, harder
Ah, you may, you may look

 

– Translations by rish, commissioned and edited by Bergborg / KinbakuBooks

 

Yukimura Haruki: Scent of Immorality (1985)

The text and photos below are taken from a magazine called ”Monthly Knockup”, published in Osaka. It contains mainly advertisments for sexual services (with phone-numbers and prices). From 1985, it is the earliest publication I have found featuring material using the name of Yukimura Haruki (雪村春樹).

Thank you inid for your work with the translation!

For some previous posts about Yukimura here on the blog, see: https://kinbakubooks.wordpress.com/category/yukimura-haruki/

 

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Scent of Immorality – The Story of a Woman

by Yukimura Haruki (Text and Photo)

From the magazine 月刊ノックアップ  [”Monthly KNOCKUP”]

Issue 3, 1985

”The Art of SM Hunting” Serial Story, No. 6

Last spring, I met a woman for taking pictures. Because I got introduced to her through an acquaintance, I hadn’t yet heard any details of her background. Judging by her looks, she was just an ordinary girl, approximately 20 years old – generally she gave an impression that she had nothing to do with SM. First, I got her naked and peered through the lens of my camera. I guessed that she hadn’t had much experience with men, as the shape of her body seemed like it had hardly yet reached full maturity. Why did such a girl have an interest in SM?

Since I had agreed not to question her about private matters, I tried to keep the conversation harmless.

“You look young, since when have you been interested in SM?”

“I guess I was on the third grade of middle school [i.e. 14–15 years old] when I first heard about SM. A boy in my class showed me a magazine.”

“So, you’ve been interested ever since?”

“Not really. Umm, it was more like I thought about whether it would feel good doing those kinds of things.”

“Had you already had your first experiences?”

“Not at all. I was a late bloomer so I didn’t lose my virginity until after I had graduated high school.”

“And when did you first try SM-play?”

“I guess about a year ago. My boyfriend at the time was crazy about SM and said he would break up with me if I didn’t do it, so I kind of had to.”

“What type of play did you do?”

“He would tie me with ropes, shove adult toys in me… different kinds of things.”

“How did it make you feel?”

“At first I really hated it because it was only painful, but he really liked it and after doing it a few times I started getting it.”

“So, you prefer being the one getting tormented? I mean, are you a masochist?”

“Yes. I don’t really like torturing men. What a pity, ha ha.”

“Do you also get excited through regular sex?”

“Yes, I do. But right now, I only do SM.”

“Well, I’ll soon take some pictures, so let’s get ready. Today I‘ll do some simple bondage [karui shibari] with you.”

We talked in this manner and started taking pictures. As expected, when I tied her, she was somewhat startled and the air was charged with tension. Of course, you could think it was because she wasn’t with her usual partner, but with me, a stranger. But no, rather, it was the situation itself that had a sense of novelty, and that made her really ashamed. As she was showing signs of hesitation, I asked her to make a daring pose.

“Can you spread your ass a little bit more? Move your legs further apart.”

“I don’t like that! I can’t do it, it’s embarrassing.”

“You’re too aware of the camera. Maybe thinking of your boyfriend tormenting you could make it easier?”

“How should I do it?”

“Open your legs fully.”

I pulled the rope running through her crotch, letting it bite even deeper into her genitalia.

“Aa… aa… it hurts! Please be gentle.”

She wiggled her ass. It seemed that she was starting to get the feeling.

“Got it, OK! Now, should we try to change the pose?”

“Wha-what are you gonna do? Fa-fast…”

She was getting more and more excited and while still being a little overwhelmed by her demeanor, I finished the job.

This is something I often think about: It seems to me that women somehow have a stronger obsession to explore sexuality, compared to men. What do you readers think?

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Translation: inid

 

 

Akechi Denki visiting Europe (1998)

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Akechi Denki visiting Europe (1998)

Japanese-inspired erotic rope bondage is now a widespread subculture in Europe. In the last few years, we have also seen a number of Japanese bakushi visiting Europe to give workshops, master-classes, private tuition and make performances. This has had a huge impact.

In this blog-post I share an article written by Ayano Katsuragi for the magazine SM Sniper (January 1999). In addition to her writing, Ayano Katsuragi collaborated as a model for example with Nureki Chimuo, Osada Eikichi and Yukimura Haruki. You can read more about her here: http://smpedia.com/index.php?title=桂木綾乃

The topic for her article is Akechi’s first trip to the Netherlands that took place in 1998 (July 25th – August 1st). (Akechi returned for a second visit during the De Mask EuroPerve-party in 1999, together with Raika, Randa Mai, Mira Kurumi, Mai Itoh and Kanda Tsubaki. But that is a story for another time.)

I have been in contact with the manager of Club Doma, and some Dutch and German rope-friends, and hope later to be able to add some material from this visit as reported in some European SM-publictions.

A great THANK YOU to rish for her work with the translation.

Enjoy!

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Katsuragi Ayano: Bound up in The Netherlands

Akechi Denki, the top name of Kinbaku stage shows, was invited to go to Europe to perform a Kinbaku session. A session that was even written about in the general press. Assisting him is Katsuragi Ayano, who has written down her thoughts about this experience, accompanied here by Handa Ryosuke’s gorgeous photos.

It’s been a while. It’s Ayano. A while ago, I wrote about my experiences in the column ”Ayano no taikendan”, but it’s been four years since I somewhat mysteriously disappeared from Sniper’s pages. It’ll become too long if I wrote about what’s happened since last time, so I’ll just write about the very interesting things that happened this summer.

It started with a phone call from Akechi-sensei.

‘How are you? Are you doing well?’

It was Saturday afternoon and I was in a sort of in an idle slumber when suddenly, he asked me a question: ‘Won’t you come with me to The Netherlands?’

A model would follow Akechi-sensei to The Netherlands and show what Japanese Kinbaku is.

After some further conversation about the details, it seemed like a very interesting project that would allow me to enjoy SM in The Netherlands.

I said yes right away, because it meant I could go to a famous torture museum I had heard about and become fascinated by. Also, I could be some kind of good-will ambassador. From there it was a busy two weeks with preparations for the trip, and then – on to Narita Airport.

25 July

We assembled at Narita Airport at 8.20 in the morning. Before that, I had no idea who the other people coming with us were, but it turned out I had met all of them in one way or another already. Everyone’s magnificent.

First of all, there were some people from the company that organised this trip – Square Ship (they have produced ”Hana no onnazumou” etc); The producer of a cat fight film, Nakano Tadao; A photographer and writer whose work is featured in this report, Handa Ryosuke; And a dominatrix, Kuronuki Hyouko. There was a huge interest in going on this trip, even from ordinary people, but it’s hard to take leave for a week on such short notice with plans changing and so on. There were also people who were going to meet up with us in The Netherlands (from England, Portugal, Los Angeles). It felt so international and I was very excited.

The plane took off at noon and we arrived the same day just past three o’ clock at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport. I was a bit surprised at immigration control, because they checked the persons before us, but let us go straight through without checking us. It’s a shame because I would have wanted a stamp. And also, what if I was an atrocious terrorist? Such big-hearted people, I thought.

We met up with the rest of the group and took the shuttle bus to hotel in The Hague. The view from the window was even more beautiful than I had imagined. I thought that the houses were so cute because they all looked the same; it made me feel that I was really in Europe.

The hotel was just as luxurious as I’d heard it was, but I was overwhelmed the most by the view of the sea. I hadn’t associated The Netherlands with the sea and I was at loss of words when I saw the seaside view, the little shops, and the merry-go-round. It will stay bright outside because The Netherlands is in a high latitude, and you won’t get all sticky from the breeze because there is not much humidity. We had dinner at a restaurant by the seaside and got acquainted with each other and enjoyed the view of the setting sun.

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Experiences at the torture museum

26 July

It was time to visit my beloved torture museum. I’ve mentioned this before, but I had a history teacher in high school that would tell me all sorts of trivia. Since he was a history teacher, he’d tell me about witch-hunts and the types of torture that was used during that time and I would borrow books from him about those kinds of things. The day before the graduation ceremony, he called me out. I remember thinking if I’d done anything bad, he wasn’t my class teacher after all, but I was nervous. He gave me a graduation present. It was a book called ”The world history of torture”. Thinking back, he must have seen through me… Anyway I’ve liked it since I was little.

I was surprised at how plain the museum looked. There it was, in the middle of town. It was pretty old and intricately built. They say people were actually tormented here in the olden days. There were many instruments of torture displayed and descriptions of how they were used. There would be guillotine executions announced at the square and the people would play football with the chopped-off heads. The guide-lady told us this quite cheerfully; I thought she was quite strange. While waiting for a sentence, they would cram the prisoners in a tiny jail-cell (barely 2 sqm) with fresh wounds. They also used stones, some of which were laying around in the museum. There was a real Spanish Donkey as well; it looked like it would really hurt if sat on. I really really wanted to touch the front of it but I wasn’t allowed to. I wonder why the instruments humans have used to inflict pain and pleasure are so genius. They’ve really thought about how to make it really hurt. Just thinking about it makes me excited.

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The day after arrival: Performing a kinbaku show at an SM club

I would have liked to take my time and enjoy my stay, but I had serious matters to attend to – the performance at one of Europe’s most prominent clubs, CLUB DOMA. I had a look at one of their pamphlets before going; it’s truly extravagant there. They spend their money differently than in Japan. The audience can leisurely watch the show and drink alcohol. There were also well-equipped play rooms, and each one of them were gorgeous. They also had lots of original videos.

The shows were usually only on weekend nights, but they advertised intensely, so although the shows were held in the middle of the day, lots of people gathered, and there was this strange excitement in the air. There were also about 30 people from Germany for news coverage, and as if pushing their way through the crowd were some women in bondage outfits working as waitresses. Compared to me, foreigners are huge. I’m so dainty compared to them.

The stage was smaller than I thought, and the audience is right in front of you, so you can see their reactions directly.

‘Hello, nice to meet you!’ The owner and his wife came out and we shook hands. They talked about the four shows on the program. First, they would put on a show, then it would be me and Sensei, then their turn again, and lastly Sensei and a Dutch woman. There was some time before the show, so they told us to relax for a while. We sat in the back and had some alcohol to ease our nerves when something happened.

‘Uh-oh, I’ve forgot something….’ Don’t you think Akechi-sensei looks scary in magazines or videos? He’s an honest gentleman like other rope artists I’ve met, but he is also very scatterbrained. When we arrived at the hotel, he realised he had forgotten his bag with his wallet and passport on the bus (luckily they found it quickly). This time, he had forgotten the bamboo whip he had especially brought from Japan. One of the staff members called a taxi so we just about made it in time. Right, Sensei?

The lights were dimmed and curtains opened. The show started. Until then, the audience had been noisy, but now they became silent. This was my first time on foreign grounds and I let my body embark on a new adventure. On the stage were a man and a woman, he in his forties, and her in her twenties.

Until then I’d only seen it on videos, but the people there were all shaved and had piercings. Also, tattoos. I wonder how they see my, in that sense, untouched body.

The man touched her really, really gently, and sometimes pulled at her nipple piercing. And used a whip (he was using a cat-of-nine-tails)… He was winding it up and lashing out.

‘So that hurts, huh?’ I spontaneously asked the Londoner next to me.

‘It might look soft, but he keeps hitting the same spot.’

I see. The skin kept getting redder and redder. Every now and then, he’d lash out strongly. A new question came to mind. She hardly moved or let out any sounds even if it hurt. It was like she was taking in the pain. I felt the reaction was kind of strange.

‘In the West, it’s considered good if you endure the pain and only let out sounds when it’s unbearable.’

That’s interesting. Westerners usually have quite a showy body-language, yet now it’s good when they don’t show much? There are so many differences… No time to be impressed, though. We’re up next!

In the backstage room, I put on a yukata and Sensei a jinbei. We thought it fitting to have something explicitly Japanese for this.

‘Let’s do our best, Ayano-chan…’

Of course we will. It’s an honor. Well, doing my best means letting my body go with the flow – the rest is up to Sensei. ‘Yes’, I answered as I was tying my hair up. It’ll probably get unraveled later on.

I kept asking myself: Why the Netherlands? I was puzzled. This might be just my own perception, but wouldn’t Germany or France be the more obvious place? Of course, there are a lot of places for SM, but their guards are up. It’s a bit unlikely for them to accept a foreigner like me (it’s pretty hard getting in to DOMA too). As you know, the Netherlands is where marijuana and prostitution is legal. There are so-called coffee shops where they smoke and use marijuana; there are also the famous display windows. They are loyal to their desires, or rather tolerant.

‘Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time for our special guest all the way from Japan. The rope artist Mister Akechi and his slave!’

The announcement was made, and the audience became silent.

‘Do your best, Ayano-chan. We will be taking pictures.’ Handa was gripping his camera, grinning. On the other side of the stage were the people from Germany. What on earth have I signed up for?

The curtains opened. The audience was really close. You can’t really see them, because of the darkness, but I was painfully aware that their eyes were on me. I thought for a moment: I can’t do this. I’m weak… and thinking about it, I haven’t done this in front of people for a while and I’m in a faraway country.

It’s also sad not to be seen, but in that instance I didn’t want them to look. Please, don’t look, I thought. I just wanted to disappear, but there was no chance of that happening. As I was thinking all of this, my body was bound up and my skin was exposed. I’ve seen them use ropes in the West, but just as a tool for restriction. We were here to show the pain and pleasure that can be inflicted by a single rope. The rope was like magic as I was bound up. It seemed like my reactions piqued their interest.

Sensei became more determined and suspended me mid-air. Things are a bit hazy in my memory, but I do remember hearing saliva being swallowed from the audience. Candles, and the wax dripping onto my body, and the bamboo whip that relentlessly struck me. I was unable to pay attention to my surroundings and just screamed with all my strength. It echoed throughout the room.

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The audience was shocked by Akechi’s and Ayano’s hardcore kinbaku performance. There were announcements saying: ‘This is not abuse’.

I heard applause when I came to myself. Sensei was drenched in sweat.

‘It’s over…’

It’s always the same after every performance, I get this washed-out feeling, but I also feel very refreshed, and it’s exhilarating. The owner and his wife came on to the stage and started talking. What were they saying? I talked to the interpreters and they said it was something in the lines of:

‘She didn’t cry because she was sad, they were tears of joy. It might have looked like abuse to you, but this is not the case.’

The people in West are used to softer reactions, so to them our style was very intense. It came to my mind that SM can be very different depending on culture and country. It’s very interesting.

Sensei had another performance coming up, so I got changed and returned to my seat. Everyone’s eyes were on me, I could feel it. I guess people were thinking: ‘She’s so delicate, I wonder where her power comes from’. Because I’m so delicate, the power is condensed – if I could speak Dutch, I would have wanted to tell them that.

Next up was a tall and cool dominatrix and her slave. Her slave had genital piercings and weights on them. Surprisingly, she was defiant; it was a bit scary. When it hurt, she would stomp her feet and glare. I don’t think I would react in a such rebellious way even if it hurt, and still smile at the beginning and the end of it.  Usually when I watch other people’s play, I become emotional, but this time I was just calmly observing. There is probably a type of SM suited for Westerners and a type of SM suited for Asian people. It’s not exclusive, but enjoying the differences might be fun. I do like the Japanese SM though.

Lastly, it was Akechi-sensei and a Dutch woman. In poor English, I asked her how she felt.

‘I’m really nervous’, she answered stiffly. Maybe she felt it was scary, like the audience had? I tried consoling her, saying Sensei is very gentle, and that the previous session was so intense only because I was used to it. I wonder if she understood it.

As expected, Sensei tied her up with care. She was calm and let her body go with the flow. She was a bit dumbfounded when he suspended her mid-air, but she seemed to really enjoy it.

I asked about her thoughts after the show. ‘As a matter of fact, I’ve been bound up by a Japanese person before, and that time it was painful. Today it was like I was gently embraced.’

We had come to DOMA in the afternoon, and as we left it was only nine o’ clock in the evening, and still bright outside. We had fun together and talked about our experiences as we had Indonesian food and went to a casino afterwards.

I wonder what tomorrow has in mind for me.

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This text has been translated by rish, commissioned and edited by Bergborg / KinbakuBooks.

Tsujimura Takashi: The psychological background of the impulse to do Seme (1953)

 

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Tsujimura: The psychological background of the impulse to do Seme (1953)

In the year 1953, the magazine Kitan Club published a series of ”roundtable” discussions with some invited readers. On the KinbakuBooks-blog, we have published a translation of one of them earlier, see here: Rope Bottoming Roundtable

The text that follows is from Kitan Club issue 1, 1953.

Translation by Emi Kinako (http://www.spiderandaubergine.com )

Thank you for your fine work!

Commissioned and edited by Bergborg / KinbakuBooks

*******************************************************

The psychological background of the impulse to do Seme

First Round-Table Discussion with Readers

led by Tsujimura Takashi

Kitan Club, issue 1, 1953

Date: 27th year of Showa (1952), October 16th

Place: Arai Ryotei (Restaurant), Sonezaki-Shinchi

Participants (in no particular order):

(A) Mr. Shozo Kawai (38 years old, Kyoto)

(B) Mr. Yoshikazu Nishizawa (42 years old, Osaka)

(C) Mrs. Netsuke Ueda (25 years old, Hyogo)

(D) Mrs. Yoshiko Mitani (36 years old, Kyoto)

MC: Mr. Takashi Tsujimura

Looking at photos of seme

Mr. Takashi Tsujimura (MC): Thank you for gathering from such far places on your day off. We actually had a lot of applicants to partake in our discussion, so we had to take a look at people’s resumes, and proceeded to host this first round table discussion. Fortunately we have two women attending, so we will see if we can focus on the ecstasy exchanged during seme during this talk.

Mr. Yoshikazu Nishizawa (B): I couldn’t muster the courage to come to this event sober, so I had a drink before this.

MC: Due to the nature of our discussion, I was worried that not all the people I contacted would actually come… Especially the ladies.

Mrs. Yoshiko Mitani (D): I got very nervous before entering the restaurant. If Mr.Tsujimura wasn’t here, I was wondering who I should ask my way through.

B: It’s the first time we were meeting, and all we could use as a sign is the purple handkerchief that he was wearing.

MC: I have to say I felt the same. I’ve ordered some beer and sake, so please feel free to have a drink while we talk. I know what we’re about to talk about is quite private, so it might be a little hard to initiate the conversation. But we’ve all read some stories in KK Tsushin [NOTE 1], as well as the Penpal-section of Kitan Club – so please, relax, and bring the strange stories that you have to share. I’m impressed by your submissions, Mr. Kawai, how about you start?

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Image: ”Mr. Kawai” (A)

Mr. Shozo Kawai (A): Uh, hello. Well it makes me more nervous, now that you’ve said that. Especially since there’s some ladies present.

MC: Well, well, don’t think about that, there are plenty of stories coming from the ladies as well.

(All laugh)

MC: How does it make you feel to look at photos of tied up women, or the illustrations by Mr. Kita? [NOTE 2]

A: Since no other magazine offers such content, it’s very appealing to us fans. How can I say it, it tightens us up…

MC: We’ve received some harsh critiques regarding our content.

A: Sometimes we see content that doesn’t reflect the reality of seme. In a way, Mr. Kita’s illustrations are a beautified version as well. Since it’s a tied up woman, that’s fine on it’s own, but we also want to see some sort of agony in her expression.

B: In that vein, I enjoy Mr. Seiu Itoh’s photos and illustrations, the agony expressed and the woman’s hair. Sometimes there’s old-fashioned stuff too, though.

A: His work was from the Taisho era to the beginning of Showa era, so that kind of traditional hair style was common. In this age of perms and cropped hair, it’s hard to see any one with that sort of hair style.

B: Well, I don’t have a strong interest in hair myself. But, I know that it can express more than any part of the body. There’s a recent publication called ”Reiko Gashu”, which shows seme in snow; I think you should put that in your magazine. [NOTE 3]

MC: We could. But if we put all images into the magazine, we won’t be able to sell the monographs… (Laughter) We need to save some of the good stuff…

B: The photos, they’re mostly nudes, but I don’t think the woman has to be naked in a seme scene. I much prefer a gag, or an obi [waist belt] that’s been messed around with…

A: Seme and exhibitionism are two different thing. For example, you might not be able to put this in your magazine, but I’d much rather see a woman in a long kimono undergarment and waist belt suspended upside down, than a naked woman in some simple rope.

MC: So you’d rather see some kinbaku, than just nude photos.

A: That’s true. If the rope is too soft, that destroys everything. I feel somewhat bad for the model, but what I really want to see is some rough rope digging into the model’s skin.

B: Itoh Seiu has his own wife model for his work, so he has been able to do some good stuff. The seme in snow can’t be done easily. Taking into consideration that many of the women modelling for your magazine are amateurs interested in seme, there are some great images. The October issue was great. [NOTE 4]

MC: You’ve finally complimented us. Truth be told, the bound nudes were curated by me. The issue with the models were that we couldn’t find good ones easily. Some of them would run off when we told them we were going to tie them, and the ones that were okay with being tied didn’t make for good models…

A: That all makes me jealous.

B: Yes, I’d love to see that process if I could.

MC: It’s not that easy. We shot various poses for 2–3 hours in a ryokan [a traditional Japanese hotel]… It was in the middle of summer, but we closed all the windows and doors, so we got dizzy after a while. I wrote about how difficult it was to shoot the images in the magazine, and that we only got a few good shots out of the many we took. Some are too obscene, and we couldn’t really edit the images; the genitals are way too ”out there”. The photo-section in our October issue, the eroticism you can see in the model’s hips, that’s something no-one has been able to visualize before.

A: That was very nice. Very artistic. The photograph of the naked back, at the beginning of the issue, was a masterpiece. [NOTE 5] The photos you sent me the other day – there were some amazing shots in there, too.

B: I was a little disappointed in the November issue, there was only one photo in the beginning. [NOTE 6]

A: About that photo, are you not allowed to publish uncensored photos?

MC: If we did that, we’d be in big trouble. But we keep the censoring at the minimum.

A: Then, I have a request. Rather than having multiple images I wish you had one big image, perhaps one that’s big enough to detach and put in a proper frame.

B: I saw a freakshow that used one of your photos for their advertising.

A: Where did you see that?

B: The other day, I was at Sennichimae, and saw it lined up with some other ”perverted material”. Next to the other photos, one could see that your images were quite good.

MC: I’ve heard about that. Hmm, I think somebody told me that magazine ”R” or ”S” had images of a woman suspended upside down, do you know anything about that?

A: Oh, that. That’s probably a fake. They probably turned the image upside down and edited so it looked like what it was supposed to be. You can prove it by looking at the rope on the model’s legs. They’re using such thin rope, but none of the model’s weight is going into her legs. Even if they used thicker rope, the rope should be pushing the meat out. If you’re using thin rope, you’d have to use some tenugui or cloth and wrap that around before using the rope. Otherwise the model wouldn’t be able to bear it. Don’t you think so, Mr.Tsujimura?

MC: That’s definitely true. Five or six days ago, I saw a model being photographed while she was suspended upside-down. She was in great pain, and they couldn’t get any shots of her to use for publication.

A: I’m impressed that one person suspended her.

MC: I used a table. I brought the table to the beam, and had the model stand on it. I tied the legs to the beam, then her arms, then I removed the table. The model was about 53 kg, so the beam started to squeak, and the rope began press hard on her ankles. By the way – Mrs. Ueda, in your letter, you said that your husband had suspended you upside down. How did you manage that… [NOTE 7]

Mrs. Netsuke Ueda (C): Uh, ummm……

B: So you get punished by your husband, Mrs. Ueda?

C: Um, yes……

A: Do you enjoy that, or do you not?

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Image: Mrs. Ueda (C)

C: Well, well, please, don’t start pushing all those questions at me (laughs) It happened naturally, without me enticing it. Of course my husband is the one who punishes me, if it were someone else, I’d be in trouble… (laughs) I lied about coming here to my husband; I told him I was off to do some shopping. I’m sure he’d punish me even more if he found out that I were at such gathering. (laughter)

MC: According to your letter, he seems to take it pretty far… It said that you can’t go to sleep unless you get tied.

C: Oh, no, that was a lie. I didn’t think things would come to this, so I just blathered… (laughs)

MC: But it is not all lies, is it?

C: My husband has a lot of books that are like your magazine in his collection. I started to take a look at them, and then began to have some funny feelings… Half of it was true, and half of it is my fantasy.

A: I would love to read that letter some time.

C: Now I’m regretting that I wrote such filthy things.

MC: I’m sure you never thought you would be sitting here talking about it…. Well, lets have a listen to some true stories. Our introduction got long, but let’s get to the point. Mr. Kawai, how about you tell us how you got interested in the world of seme…

Torture play inspired by the Special Higher Police

A: I’m sure you’re all aware how awful the special higher police are overseas, so I’ll cut to the chase, but I worked for the railway system and was stationed in Harbin. I went to visit a friend of mine who was in the special higher police force, and he happened to be torturing a local woman, who was a suspect for a case.

MC: How old were you at that point?

A: That was right before the Great East Asia War, and Japan was in full force then, so I suppose it was around the 15th year of Showa [1940]. I married my current wife in Mukden, and got transferred to Harbin, I was probably around 26 years old…

MC: Was your marriage a result of a romance?

A: Well, something like that. We got married before my father knew, and before I got permission… But to stay on topic, the way the special higher police tortured their suspects… they usually tied their arms behind, threw them to the ground, stomped on them, suspended them, tied them onto a chair, burned their pubic hair with cigarettes, shoved broom sticks or walking sticks up their gentitals… Things like that. But what I observed was way worse than that. I had seen women being tortured twice or three times before that, but that was all about tying them up and beating them…

B: I’ve heard there were some innocent people as well, who got harmed during such proceedings by the police.

MC: How should I put it, it’s basically the strong beating up the weak.

A: Most of it was something like that. It was April back then, so still cold, but they had a 25 year old Chinese woman naked, her arms and legs tied onto the steam pipes running along the ceiling. I was told that they were doing something fun, and to come take a look. They pulled out an electric cord that was about 1 or 2 meters long, ripped it apart so that the circuits were out, plugged the cord in, and used it while it was connected to the electricity. The woman was screaming and crying, and the officer held onto her buttocks so she wouldn’t move. Any woman would’ve jumped in agony if that was done to them.

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Image caption: ”Aaah”

B: I wonder how it feels.

D: What a horrible thing to do.

(D and C look at each other, theirs brows knotted)

MC: I’ve heard that’s used on men, too.

A: I heard they insert the cord into the urethra, but I’ve never seen it being done.

MC: Is that how you got into the scene, Mr. Kawai…?

A: It’d be strange if I were to say that I got inspired by that incident, but I did get introduced to the world of seme by watching the special higher police torture that woman. I was telling my wife what I had seen that day before bed time. I was trying to reenact the incident, and while I was doing so with my wife, I really got into it. Since we had no children, we began calling it ”torture play”, and on some drunken nights I’d tell her ”Hey, I’m gonna torture you tonight”… Thanks to that, I got saved from a lot of boredom.

MC: ”Torture play”, I see… Let’s save our conversation about the painless, charming torture of love for later. Mr. Nishizawa, how did you get into the scene…?

Tying the victim to a tree and dissecting them

B: Let’s see. By the time I was in elementary school, I was a little bully. I was tying people, and beating them up. So my history is quite deep. When I was a child, there were a lot of plays and stories about police officers carrying their sabers, fighting away burglars, catching thieves with rope, and tales of them losing their lives while in service. It wasn’t like the way it is today- not about officers shooting their guns; it was about hand-cuffs, rope, sabers. So cops and robbers became a very popular activity among us children. We would gather, and some of us had rope and sticks in our hands, while others played the burglars.

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Image caption:  ”I’m gonna dissect you!” ”No!”

A: I used to do that a lot, too…

MC: It brings back memories. When we were young we got thrilled from stuff like that. I used to play the burglar and got tied up. I forget when it was, one time I was tied onto a tree, and the other children ran away as soon as our teacher showed up. The teacher untied me and told me ”Stop being tied up all the time, you should be a cop some time and tie others.” [NOTE 8]

B: I see, so you’re listening to your teacher, now tying up models and practicing revenge. (laughs)

MC: It’s better to tie than to be tied. It doesn’t hurt, at least.

B: Back to the story, and you see, by the time were playing such games in the mountains, I caught the kid that was playing the robber, and tied him to a tree. Then I started saying things like ”I’m going to dissect you” and ”I’m going to torture you”; I pulled down his pants, pinched his genitals, picked at it, tied the end of it with some string, put some dirt on it… We were having crazy fun as kids, you know.

MC: I still see some young kids going at it like that in the back streets.

A: The grown-ups look at the tied up kid, and have a good laugh…

B: Now that I try to remember, I think that the kid playing the robber was feeling ecstatic by being tied and picked on. As if he was masturbating.

MC: That’s quite possible. I’ve heard that there are a few people that experience masturbating by the time they’re in elementary school.

B: And when I reflect about it, I think by experiencing such things as a child, we begin to lean towards sadism or masochism.

A: When we’re playing doctor, girls experience a masochistic sense of ecstasy by being touched, and boys find their sadistic side by being mean to the girls.

MC: An example I know is when a child did something bad, so as punishment, they were tied to a tree. And by being tied repeatedly, they get a sense of loneliness as well as ecstasy, and start misbehaving simply to be tied to a tree again. Obviously this child deserves the masochist’s stamp of approval.

B: I used to live in a dormitory during my grade school years. For three years, I was in a homosexual relationship with my roommate. One day, we were fooling around; wrestling each other or playing sumo, something like that – and I tied him up with a judo belt. After that, everything went as I wanted it to. That’s when I started to think about masochism. After we graduated, I’d tie him up at night, and play with his body. We mutually masturbated, but he also serviced me with his mouth. In this case, I’m obviously the sadist and he’s the masochist.

A: So, now you have your wife as a partner?

B: Since I live with my four children, I can’t tie my wife up. And my wife seems to feel more pain than pleasure from seme.

MC: So have you been practicing seme after your marriage?

B: I don’t really practice seme with my wife. Instead, I have a woman that I can tie freely. She lives quite close to here.

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Image:  Mr. Nishizawa (B)

MC: She’s your number two?

B: Not quite… Some magazine explained it well, a ”mistress on contract” or ”light mistress”; I don’t take care of her fully. I give her a few thousand yen every month, and I get to do as I please when I see her. I tie her, take out my sexual needs on her; I basically pay a salary. It’s fun for me, and cheaper to do so than hire a professional.

MC: I heard that there are a lot of widows that do that. Though the younger generation seems to be getting into it as well.

A: It’s almost like a part-time job for them. I suppose the concept of chastity is starting to change.

MC: They’re a perfect existence for men who have time and money. The ads I see in tabloids about women looking for marriage and live-in maids are also examples of this. By the way, Mrs. Ueda, you get tied by your husband. Would you share a story of one of your experiences with us? I’m sure you’re here to share with us.

An earthquake during kinbaku

 C: It’s quite embarrassing for a woman like me to talk about this in front of all of you… But I suppose I can’t hide anything in front of you all, so here I go. It was about an year after our marriage when we started the activities…

MC: It must’ve shocked you at first.

C: Yes, but I was already obsessed at that point. (laughter) And when my husband tells me ”I’ll tie you up tonight”, I’m often in the mood for it, too.

B: I understand your husband’s feelings very well.

MC: Unless you’re both in the mood, tying and being tied up doesn’t really work out.

C: Yes. But I’ve had one horrifying incident. I’ll never forget about that. It was about the end of autumn, before I had children… That night, my husband had me all tied up in a complicated way. He removed our cabinet door, and tied me onto the door. He made me basically stand on my head, when we suddenly felt a strong tremor. I can’t believe how terrified I was of that earthquake…

A: Your husband must’ve been in great shock…

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Image caption: ”Crap…”

C: He was in such a panic. I was completely naked and couldn’t move, and blood was flowing into my brain. I couldn’t make a noise because I was gagged. I have no idea how my husband had the strength to do so, but he pulled the door – with me attached to it – out to our garden. My mother-in-law was out in the garden too, and witnessed the state I was in… (laughter) We really wished we could hide in that moment, but we couldn’t. For a period of time after, I couldn’t look my mother-in-law in her eye. I was terribly embarrassed. She passed away last year, and this is a horrible thing to say, but I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders… (All roaring in laughter)

MC: That’s a situation that nobody would want to be seen in. Especially by your parents. But your mother-in-law must’ve been in greater shock than yourself. She must’ve thought – what horrible things are my son doing to his wife… (laughs)

C: Oh, I wonder… Mr. Tsujimura, there was an article you wrote titled ”A couple’s love and kinbaku, a survey” in the October issue. My husband really relates to that article. So he enjoys shibari as a form of foreplay, rather than seme. [NOTE 9]

A: Most married couples are like that.

C: Yes, so when we tie, I get sometimes get cranky – it can get quite painful if my flesh gets pinched between the ropes. But other than that, I let him do anything he wants – for example, an upside-down suspension isn’t too painful.

B: What a great wife… I’m truly jealous.

C: Oh my, but my husband and I are both happy about our situation, so it’s great…

B: Which means, you enjoy being tied, don’t you?

C: It might be weird to say that I like it, but I probably do because it is with my husband. If it were some random young ruffian that barged into my house and tied me up, I wouldn’t have the same feelings. (laughter)

MC: And if that keeps you happy as a couple, there’s nothing else to say. I feel like you’ve made me listen to you boast about your relationship. Well why don’t we have you share some stories too, Mrs. Mitani…

D: …… (Mrs. Mitani laughs, but does not respond)

MC: It’s unfair, you’ve only been listening to others’ stories.

D: Oh, I’m horrible at telling stories.

MC: It didn’t seem so when you wrote to KK Tsushin. You told your stories in great detail. You’ve said you wanted to meet Mr. Kita. You’re just like Mr. Kita, and you’re not on the receiving end, you get controlled by your desires. Go on, spit it out. If not, I might make the confession for you.

D: I felt like I’ve lost my opportunity to speak, I guess I got a little scared.

MC: You should’ve spoken earlier… You made Mrs. Ueda, who’s younger than yourself, speak, and you’ve kept to yourself. Go on now, tell us the story about the maid…

Tormenting a woman by hanging her by her black hair

D: My sexual urges were planted in me when I was seven or eight years old. My mother and I were at a freak show after paying our respects to a shrine in Gion. There was a Chinese man performing – a boy was tied up from head to toe with some thick rope, thrown into a bag, and the bag was closed tightly.

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Image: Mrs. Mitani (D)

B: I’ve seen that a few times myself. After they collect all the money, the audience calls for the boy, and he reappears, having escaped from the rope. I’ve heard that the Chinese man makes him drink a lot of vinegar so his joints become flexible, and he can escape from anything.

MC: They would probably arrest the man for child-abuse in today’s time…

A: All circuses are just about the same.

D: Just like Mr. Nishizawa just mentioned, the way they collected the money was terrible. The boy’s arms were tied to his back, all the way up, and he was taken around for everyone to see. Just when he was right by me, the man placed a rod between his wrists, and twisted the rope even further. I heard something crack, and before I knew it, the arms came out to the front of his body, and the man kept tugging on the rope, dragging the boy around the audience. The boy looked like a stray dog with his arms all messed up, with tears in his eyes, looking down.

A: How horrible.

D: I was looking at him, in shock. My body was shaking. But I couldn’t take my eyes off of him. I had this feeling of wanting to torture him, so I must’ve been a little strange already when I was a child…

B: All children have an interest in the bizarre.

D: And on top of that, you know how criminals were dragged out in public while being hand-cuffed with rope?

MC: When they’re getting transferred?

D: Probably something like that. I used to chase after them and just stare at the situation.

MC: Let’s talk about the maid.

D: I suppose… I, well I’m sure you’re all aware, but my husband passed away four years ago. I live alone with my maid, with nothing to do…

B: What do you do for work?

D: I live off of what my husband left me. I also have some stock in my name, so I’m waiting for that to come through…

A: It’s normal to want something a little different when you have money and extra time on your hands.

D: My maid has been around for two years – she’s very energetic and helpful, so I’ve taken good care of her. But one time, I made her go run an errand… I was waiting for her, but she stayed out without my permission, telling me she was staying with a family member, or something like that. I wasn’t so serious, but I really scolded her. She didn’t stop crying, and begged me to do whatever I pleased.

B: Was that the start of your misadventures?

D: Something like that. Since she spent the night out, I figured she stayed out with a man. I later found out that she really did stay with a family member. But then, I told her that I would do as I pleased…

A: You were being hysterical, huh… (laughter)

D: Well now you’ve said something we were all struggling to say out loud. Well, that’s the truth, so I can’t argue… (laughter) I was irritated, and I really wanted to punish her. So I made her undress to her underwear, tied her arms in the back using a kimono sash, grabbed her by the hair, and dragged her to the closet door. I divided her hair in two parts and tied them onto the beam, suspended her, questioned her what she did the night before, and began torturing her with a ruler.

A: There was a scene just like that in the Reiko Gashu

MC: (Flipping through pages of the book) Ah, here it is. It’s titled ”Shigure”. The mood is very similar, and…

D: She tells me: ”I didn’t do anything with a man”. I told her I will look into that, and she tells me: ”Yes, please go ahead, do that.”

A: And you undressed her… Well this is becoming interesting.

D: When you’re a virgin, you’re so pure, unlike me… (laughs) But it’s not like that would’ve calmed me down, and I wanted to take my torture to the next level. I got out some acupuncture needles that my late husband used to use, and began stabbing them into her breasts, thigh, and her private areas. I began to feel very excited, and at the same time, my maid’s face began to fluster, and panting. She seemed like she was in pain, but her eyes were closed gently, as if she was enjoying everything. From that incident on, we started playing like that.

A: Seems like she’s a bit on the masochistic side.

D: Probably so. She’s held herself together when I tie and torture her quite strongly, and I’ve used tools on her as well, but it seems like she’s enjoying herself…

B: Tools as in, something like dildos?

D: Things like that. Like kokeshi dolls and vegetables……

MC: Now that Mrs. Mitani’s gotten talkative, why don’t we have the others share their stories?

Tying two women as if they were on a scale

A: I’ve tied two women at once, well, my wife and her sister. Truth be told, my wife’s sister came downstairs to use the restroom, and saw what my wife and I were doing. I was tying her up, and doing all sorts of things to her. At first I didn’t notice anything, but around her second and third time, I felt a presence. I felt a little demonic, and opened up the screen door to show her my wife – who was all tied up and gagged and in nothing but her undergarment. I dragged her sister into the room, warning her that I couldn’t let her be after she had seen what we were doing. I pushed her onto the floor and tied her up in front of my wife. That was the start of it all.

MC: I’m surprised your wife didn’t say anything.

A: At first she wasn’t happy about it, but we made a pact. Since she saw what we were doing, why not enjoy it amongst the three of us… But I promised her that I wouldn’t rape her sister.

B: I’m impressed that her sister agreed. I don’t understand what was going on in her head.

C: Is that true… seriously?

A: It’s true. But obviously the sister was all embarrassed, wiggling in the rope as she was tied onto the floor beam.

B: That’s still going on?

A: No, we only did it about four or five times…

B: She must be troubled, having a strange brother-in-law like you.

D: Perhaps your sister-in-law enjoys being tied, no? Otherwise she wouldn’t be sneaking around to get a peek. I would get it if it were a one-time thing, but…

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Image caption: Dragged my sister-in-law into this

A: I don’t know, maybe she’s a masochist. We did something very fun, once. I tied a pulley onto a beam, and tied my wife and her sister with the rope from the pulley. I left my wife tied up, and had her sister climb up to the beam using a ladder, tied her, and removed the ladder. They were both suspended in the air, and when I pulled on my wife’s leg, her sister would go up. I didn’t go any further, but I took a good look at them suspended in the air.

B: And your sister-in-law, you didn’t do anything further with her?

A: As I promised, no, nothing.

B: I’m impressed that you held yourself together. I don’t know what I would’ve done. But perhaps your sister-in-law wanted something more. If she did, that’s such a cruel way of teasing her.

A: She has a prospective husband. She’s going to get married soon. I’m glad I didn’t go any further.

B: She’ll probably serve her husband very well. She got educated so much before her marriage.

MC: Perhaps she will become like Mrs. Ueda and truly enjoy being tied. But Mr. Kawai, your story sounds a bit mischievous too.

C: These days, my husband uses a ladder quite often. He ties me to the ladder. Ties my ankles onto the edges of the ladder, and flips it upside down.

A: There’s so many ways to use a ladder. I tried using one with my wife as well, and it’s great since you can handle it on your own. I made her spread her legs, tied her legs down on the edges, and flipped the ladder upside down. You can easily do an upside down suspension that way. I also use a shortened candle. I’ll light it up and fix it to one of the steps, and the wax will drip onto her body. The flame goes out just in time.

B: Isn’t that hot?

A: The wax is only hot up at the top, so there’s no worries. I mean, the wax is quite hot, but it’s nothing she can’t handle. Once the wax hardens, it’s quite a sight. I’ve done this twice or thrice, but I always get a different outcome.

B: I’ll give it a try. For me, my woman, she lives in an apartment, so we can’t make too much noise. So I’ll tie her, bite her and suck on her. But the other day, both of us got so drunk, and she begged me to be extra mean to her. I decided the time was now, and though I was drunk and dizzy, I placed her on top of the sewing machine table, and tied down her breasts, arms, stomach, hips, and legs onto the steam pipes that went up to the ceiling. Then I moved away the sewing machine-table… Her body was floating in air, and I began to paint obscure drawings on her body using black ink. I drew a penis on her breast, a vagina on her cheek, and so on.

MC: Did you whip her, like they do overseas?

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Image caption: Drew obscure illustrations in black ink

B: That’s painful. (laughter) I don’t want to put the woman in pain for my own pleasure.

A: You make it sound like kinbaku involves no pain. It’s quite painful, you know.

B: Yes, but there’s only one thing you can do with whipping. With kinbaku, there are so many options. And using a whip in an apartment… All that noise – there would be rumors piping up everywhere.

C: My husband never beats me. He hit me once with a band, but I told him to stop because it was painful. He never did it again. I’m sure he was just copying illustrations and photos from overseas that he had seen.

A: In foreign countries, when children get mischievous, they get a beating on their bottoms. Those people must be accustomed to being threatened by a whip.

B: There’s another weird play that they do, covering each other in oil and chasing after each other until they get all tired.

A: I sometimes practice rape fantasies. I ask my wife to fight back as much as she can. And then I force her down, tie her up, undress her, and fight again and push myself in. It can be pretty fun.

C: This has got nothing to do with tying, but… we sometimes pull a lotto, and the winner gets to pretend that they’re a baby. Feeding, urinating, bathing, dressing, all of that… You pretend that you’re a child and have the other person take care of you.

A: The wife holding onto the husband, have her legs pulled up, and made to pee… How funny.

MC: All of your stories sound so fun, and kinbaku and seme have become a great addition to your marriage and sex life. The acts themselves are like foreplay. I guess you’re an exception, Mrs. Mitani……

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Image: Reporter Tsujimura  (MC)

D: Oh, I adore that girl. That’s why I want to torture her. I wonder if you can understand…

A: I understand you, really I do.

MC: And there’s nothing sexual?

D: If I remove her freedom, things naturally go that way…

MC: I’m sure things will becoming interesting if we have someone like Reiko Kita or Tsuruko Matsui write about those stories.

A: Next time, I’d love to have a discussion with them as well.

B: I agree.

MC: I shall let them know. We’ve spent an awful long time talking, so I’d like to call it quits now. Thank you so much for sharing your stories.

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Notes by Bergborg / KinbakuBooks

  1. The KK通信 was a small publication only for the subscribers of Kitan Club that existed 1952–1954. Often, it consisted of just a few pages.

There is some information on SMpedia: http://smpedia.com/index.php?title=KK通信

And there is a scan here: http://nawa-art.com/backnumber/kktsushin/kktushin.htm

  1. ”Mr. Kita” is of course the masterful artist Kita Reiko, also known as Minomura Kou and Suma Toshiyuki.
  1. The Reiko Gashu was a book collecting artwork by Kita Reiko, published in 1952. You get a peek here: http://www.kinbakutoday.com/kita-reikos-1952-album-玲子画帖/
  1. When this readers’ roundtable-talk was held, in October 1952, it was still quite new for Kitan Club to publish photos of rope-bondage. The photo-section in the October-issue consisted of four pages:

http://nawa-art.com/backnumber/1950/195210/106.html

http://nawa-art.com/backnumber/1950/195210/107.html

http://nawa-art.com/backnumber/1950/195210/108.html

http://nawa-art.com/backnumber/1950/195210/109.html

The issue also featured rather fine illustrations of rope-scenes by Kita Reiko.

  1. The naked back at the beginning of the 1952 October issue of Kitan Club can be viewed here:

http://nawa-art.com/backnumber/1950/195210/002.html

  1. The single photo published in the 1952 November issue can be viewed here:

http://nawa-art.com/backnumber/1950/195211/002.html

  1. I am note sure, but I suspect that Mrs. Ueda’s husband is Ueda Seishiro. See some earlier posts about Ueda Seishiro on KinbakuBooks here: https://kinbakubooks.wordpress.com/?s=ueda&submit=Sök
  1. Tsujimura tells a version of this childhood story also in a much later interview:

”As I remember it, I realized that there were feelings like this when I was in the 3rd or 4th grade of elementary school. I was playing ‘police and thief’. In this game, you divide into two groups, the police and the thieves. When the police catches a thief, they tie him to a tree. I remember I was having a strange ecstasy when being tied to a tree. So, in my case, it didn’t start with tying but with being tied. I started as an M, not an S.”

Published in full translation here: https://kinbakubooks.wordpress.com/2016/05/18/tsujimura-takashi-interview-in-sankei-weekly-1976/

  1. You can read Tsujimuras article here:

http://nawa-art.com/backnumber/1950/195210/104.html

http://nawa-art.com/backnumber/1950/195210/105.html

Nureki & Yukimura: Dialogue in SM Spirits (1993)

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Nureki & Yukimura – Dialogue in SM Spirits, February 1993

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The following translation from the magazine SM Spirits has been done by Shiba. Commissioned and edited by Bergborg/ Kinbaku Books.

Do you enjoy this kind of material? Please send a donation to help us keep up the work! Using http://www.PayPal.com is a simple way to send also a small symbolic gift. Just put the following email as receiver: bergamott@live.se  I promise to put your contribution to good use. Thank you for your support for 2017!

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Chimuo Nureki VS Haruki Yukimura (Part 1)

 The famous bakushi Chimuo Nureki, and the sharp SM-video director-bakushi Haruki Yukimura… These two men, well-known to people with a passion for ropes, are creating a video-work together. In this issue, we offer the rope-loving readers of SM Spirits some photos from the shooting of this video. We also include a report from ”Kinbiken”, a regular gathering for those searching for the beauty of kinbaku.

This is our report from the Taiyo Tosho video-shooting site:

Chimuo Nureki’s part of the video was shot in a Japanese style house. The model was in kimono, and had her hair in nihongami. The work presents a kind of ”beauty of kinbaku” that Mr. Nureki has been cultivating and exploring for a long time.

When we asked him to come and do the dialogue with Mr. Yukimura for our magazine [see Part 2 below], Mr. Nureki told us that he and Mr. Yukimura were in the processes of making a video together for Taiyo Tosho – a really luxurious video for the enthusiasts [the Japanese word is ”maniacs”]. We quickly requested to get a permission to attend and shoot some stills from the site. And we got it.

The first day of the shooting, the scenes of Mr. Nureki was shot in a Japanese style house in Setagaya, Tokyo. (The house was also used for SM Spirits 1992 November issue’s photos of Izumi Morikawa and this month’s of Misao Tachibana.) His lifework is devoted to the beauty created by the tied female body and the jute rope that binds it, ”the beauty of kinbaku”. The main purpose of Mr. Nureki’s part of the video was to allow the camera to capture this beauty. The model was dressed in a kimono and had the hair in nihongami, probably in order to let the beauty of kinbaku stand out. The models were Ms. Asami Hirose with her light colored skin and well-shaped breasts, and Ms. Eriko Machida who knows how to look good in a kimono and who has also been seen in this magazine earlier. The facial expressions of these women in Mr. Nureki’s ropes transforms into the melancholic… This is the world of the beauty of kinbaku.

The second day of the shooting was quite different from the one with with Mr. Nureki. The shooting was done in a studio with wooden floor, and the model wore a skin-tight dress. Mr. Yukimura’s style is directed towards beauty of bondage and the fetishism engendered by the ropes and the female body. When you hear ”bondage” [ボンデージ], you might think of John Willie etc, but in Mr. Yukimura’s bondage those American bondage poses are tied by jute ropes, and Mr. Nureki’s influences can be seen in it. If we say that Mr. Nureki’s restriction shows beauty by a kind of bondage that changes the form of the female body, Mr. Yukimura’s shows the beauty of the female body form as it emerges by how he puts ropes on it. I can’t make any comment on the video as such, since I haven’t watched it yet, but I can say without a doubt that it will be a ”must watch” video for people who like the beauty of the female body bound by ropes. The video is planned to be released in late January to early February from Taiyo Tosho.

Report from a ”Kinbiken” gathering

Kinbakubi kenkyukai – Kinbiken. This group has the bakushi Chimuo Nureki and the photographer Akio Fuji at its core, and gathers enthusiasts who are haunted by beauty of kinbaku. The meeting seems peaceful [なごやか], but it is actually a game played in real earnest [真剣勝負] between the members and Mr. Nureki.

We got the chance to observe one of the monthly meetings because of Mr. Nureki’s kindness. We were told in advance that they avoid visits by non-members of the club as much as possible, and indeed the members keep a distance from us, just like water and oil does. Once the meeting starts, Mr. Nureki performs precisely the shibari the members request. The model of the day is Ms. Fuyuko Kiano who is well-known to the people who know Kinbiken, and Ms. Maya Ougi who modeled three times for the meeting today. Since they use only models who really like rope, the two models quickly begin showing ecstatic expressions when tied. It’s seldom seen in SM videos just how sexy women getting intoxicated by ropes are. I was amazed that the beauty of kinbaku created by just ropes and female bodies without any pornographic items (exposure of genitals or use of vibrators are not happening at these meetings) can be so full of eroticism and stimulate the observer.

Chimuo Nureki VS Haruki Yukimura (Part 2)

Yukimura: Should we start this by speaking about the first time Nureki san and I met?

Nureki: Yes. It began with the making of the documentary film The World of Kou Minomura. So, let’s start with that.

Y: I got an offer from the president of Cinemagic. He asked me if I would be interested in being the director for The World of Kou Minomura. It was an honor for me to receive such a task. And I met Nureki san for the first time then, working as the director for this film. I considered presenting it as ”Part 1”, to be followed by a ”Part 2”, and maybe a ”Part 3”, but the president wanted it all in one video if possible. It was a quite struggle to edit everything into a single 60 minutes long video. I wanted to show the whole talk between Minomura san and Nureki san in the video, but at the same time I had a need to make something that the viewers would be happy with, too. Sometimes it is good to be an enthusiast, and at the same time not so good. So, I ended up showing Nureki san’s and Minomura san’s shibari, and put the sound of their conversation on top of these visuals, and thus managed to edit all of it into one video.

N: I still receive letters saying ”it is a master piece” from subscribers of Kinbiken Communications. The video took time and energy to do, and it shows in the result.

Y: It took me two months in total to finish the work.

Shimazaki: The starting point of Minomura san and Nureki san’s conversation in the film is a dialog with Yumi Asano, a model who was starring also in the S&M-video called Graffiti 3 [グラフティ 3]. By the way, I think that was the first occurrence in which Nureki sensei did talking in a video (if we don’t count the self-produced videos). Is this correct?

N: I don’t think… – was it?

S: Anyway, it is a valuable video for the enthusiasts, since it includes you talking while you tie in the film.

N: That was spontaneous. Without the talking, I wouldn’t have found out how to proceed with the tie. I’m glad they didn’t edit it away. Let me tell you something before I forget to mention it: There is a new video which Mr. Takatsuki is directing and that is being published by Cinemagic. I am in it and the video is really great.

S: Please do not speak more about it, don’t spoil it. By the way, I really liked the video that came out from Art Video in which you had a role as a monk…

N: People have asked me to do something like that again.

Y: I started appearing in videos because I had that video in my mind (laugh).

N: (laugh) I know a guy named Taro Kai [甲斐太郎] who often appears in works of Art Video. He has a weird eye for SM. He intentionally places himself lower than the others peoples eye level when he acts in videos. Typically, he acts as a beggar, shoe polisher, or vagrant who is cruising the streets. So, at one time, he and I acted as monks that beg [乞食ぼうず]. It felt like I was transferred to another world, a very masochistic world. A woman looked at me with despised look when I took a glance at her leg (laugh). And we moved to Shinjuku Central Park and sat on the grass… Then a pretty girl happened to pass by. The girl is the girl who also appears in The World of Kou Minomura. I told the president of Cinemagic that I’ve found a very attractive girl. Well, let me tell you about the girl. In the video I mentioned, the scene suddenly switches to a room in an apartment. In the script, it turns out that the monk wasn’t really a beggar but actually a man who is working in a decent company. He was just acting as a beggar for amusement. That was the story. I did quite cruel things to the girl together with Taro Kai. We did things like inserting finger in her ass and applying an enema. After the filming, she didn’t come out from the shower for a long time. The shower room was on the balcony, on the 7th floor. We joked saying to each other: ”We better watch out! What if she jumps out from 7th floor!” About an hour later, she came out of the shower and said: ”That felt so good.” She also said: ”The SM videos I’ve been in before were all boring and I didn’t feel like watching them, but I do want to watch this one.” Then I thought: ”She is really something!”, and recommended her.

Y: There was an interesting episode during the shooting of The World of Kou Minomura as well. The model Ruka Mikami was in a rope-suspension for a long time. During the video-shoot, another girl stepped in to save Ruka. In the script, she actually wasn’t supposed to come in to the scene – but she did because she had pity on Ruka.

N: I still tease Ruka about this… I still think the scene was more interesting before the girl came in to help her…

Y: There was another happening after we’d finished shooting almost all the shibari scenes. Ruka came to me and begged me to let her do some girl-on-girl action. I thought it’s not so bad to have different varieties of scenes, so I let her do it although the other girl had no experience of this. They started making out. Ruka started fucking the girl energetically in a dark corner of the room while we were preparing for the next scene after we were done with shooting their making-out scene. Many masochists seem to have potential of being bisexual… None of them were just acting this scene. They reminded me of two white snakes tangling up on each other. I was so moved… Ruka looked tiny next to the other girl who was over 160 cm tall… And tiny Ruka was on top and making the other girl moan. Then we were about to shoot the suspension-scene with Ruka, that I mentioned earlier. When I suspended her, Ruka said to me: ”Sensei, tie my mouth, and lift the rope up and connect it to my leg please. You saw me fucking the girl. Now, give me a rope-gag as a punishment.” It was actually the last time I worked with her, although I would like to do it again… Anyway: that’s how I met Nureki san (laugh).

S: I wondered why you didn’t sell The World of Kou Minomura at a lower price and purchase only, not rental.

Y: Cinemagic wanted the video to sell.

N: Since they invested much money on it.

Y: So, I had the thought in my head that I need to make it understandable for general viewers.

S: But the work has the point of view of a kinbaku enthusiast. It has a different camera-angle, compared with the regular shootings.

Y: Right. That’s because I was inspired by the perspective Minomura san had when he was making Kitan Club, and I felt I had to make something that enthusiasts would be happy with, even though the main target is general viewers. Otherwise it would not be sold much. Minomura san was saying the same thing.

N: Of course, that is how it is.

S: Enthusiasts sometimes say ”it’s boring” – but they buy SM-videos anyway. They buy videos expecting there wouldn’t be even 5 minutes of their favorite scenes in the 60-minute video, maybe it’s just one minute, or 30 seconds. But even only for these 30 seconds, they are happy with it.

S: I’ve been making collection of my favorite scenes from videos, but there aren’t many scenes I can use out of videos these days. Regarding Cinemagic’s videos, they spend so much effort on lighting and still doesn’t show what I want to see, even if it’s a good scene. The rope-frictions are blurred for instance. And sometimes, they show male actors close up (laugh).

Y: (Wry laugh)

S: I definitely do not pick out those scenes for my collection (laugh).

N: I have always been wondering why they do these things. I think the ones who are creating videos have strong aspiration for films, movies. And that can lead to bad result when they make SM videos.

S: Well, maybe it’s bad according to enthusiasts. But for general viewers…

N: Close ups of male actors are not needed, even by general viewers.

Y: There are a few who like it, I believe…

N: There are a few of course. A few. Who is in the video? Was that you? (laugh)

Y: …Give me a break (laugh).

N: Did you start your career by making movies?

Y: Only videos. It’s hard to do SM in movies.

N: Incidentally, among the staff at Cinemagic there are quite a few people who been involved in movie making. I reflected on this question recently and came to the conclusion that SM is for video camera. It’s for video camera essentially.

Y: Film is good too, but to really tell a story, it takes lots of time and needs good equipment. If you want to appeal something mentally, then films work.

S: Nikkatsu roman porn…

N: I think the bad influence of Nikkatsu roman porn still exists. Oh, I really think so. I thought about it just the other day.

Y: SM is not a suitable theme for a movie camera.

N: That’s right.

Y: Initially, my videos were too much directed towards the enthusiasts, and the story got lost (wry laugh). You have no choice but reducing the importance of the story if you want to really spend time on the bondage scenes. I’m still learning by trial and error, even now.

S: My imagination helps me fill in the background stories.

Y: It does, doesn’t it? (laugh)

N: It’s no good if the videos are not made for viewers who are able to understand the story by themselves with help of their own imagination. So, you should eliminate all the unnecessary parts, and leave some blank space for the viewers. Blank spaces which they can fill out with their own imagination. I once did the shibari for the director Yoshihiro Wakatsuki’s first movie. The director said: ”The movie got lost because I put too much things in it”. So I said: ”It’s such a great thing that it got lost. What’s interesting about making something you don’t get lost in.” But moviemakers don’t think like we do, it seems.

N: There is something I’ve been wondering all the time. I wonder what the beauty of rope is. I want to know what beautiful shibari is, and what not-beautiful shibari is.

Y: The reactions [リアクション] of the girls in rope, probably.

N: Can we say that it’s a beautiful shibari if only the reaction is good [リアクションさえよければ]?

Y: Uh, reactions…what can I say.

N: If that is the case, the girls who are sensitive, the girls who are sensitive to any kind of shibari would always give you good reactions. So what then decides if one is good at tying, or bad?

Y: I told you that I like your shibari because it’s loose once, remember? I mean, I tended to tie tight… and I found it uninteresting. Then I saw your rope and it was loose.

N: Is my rope loose?

Y: No, just listen to me please.

N: I know what you mean. But I asked you anyway (laugh).

Y: It’s different from the ropes just becoming loose. Your ropes move and change their form gradually. They become a little crooked, or the ropes are pulled apart from each other. And when I see it, I think: ”That is so good.” What I wanted to say is that it is not always good just because it’s tied neatly and tight.

N: I don’t calculate it beforehand.

Y: You don’t? I am less experienced than you, but I know it’s not easy to do. The total amount of people I’ve tied reached 100 recently, and only now I have started to understand it.

N: I was doing my current shibari already since I tied the very first person. I’ve tied about 3000 times now, so about 3000 people. Well, I’ve tied same girl more than once, so it isn’t exactly 3000 people – but something like that. And my style hasn’t changed since I was tying girls for the Uramado-magazine. I didn’t look at what Kou Minomura was doing, I just worked on my own, and he admired it saying: ”Oh – – – -”.

Y: Minomura san doesn’t use many ropes at all. He doesn’t bring more than five ropes with him. He started his career with painting… using the name ”Reiko Kita”.

N: He is really good at it. Actually I like to use even less rope than Kou Minomura. I think it is better to use just one. The main reason why I use many ropes is that the editor of the SM Select-magazine wants me to. There are two types of people, the ones who like to see many ropes, and the ones who prefer fewer ropes. I think the ones who like to see many ropes are less of the ”enthusiast” kind. Let’s say I put a rope really well on the first try on a Kinbiken-meeting. I say: ”This one is good, I like it” and recommend the members to take photos of it. Even then, after a short while, they ask me to add more ropes.

S: That’s because the members wants to see you tying more.

Y: I’ve been seducing girls and then tying them since I was young. The best moment of tying for me is when I bring their arms to the back. It moves me.

S: That moment is the best.

N: That moment, indeed.

Y: I wonder… I guess it is because it’s the rope of that moment. But the members want to see sensei’s shibari on different body parts of the models, on the chest, the buttocks, and the crotch for example.

S: I would like to hear some more comments from Nureki sensei about the loose rope that we talked about earlier.

N: Loose, it means that there is some space left. A space that allows the girl to move and show various poses and expressions.

S: Plasticity, if we see it objectively. Is that it?

N: Yes, it is, of course.

Y: It is. It can be a situation where the rope should be for example vertical or in the middle, but the important thing is always that the rope is matching well with the girls’ motions and poses.

N: Tying girls is not like tying a bag of rice [Komedawara]. It may sound pathetic, but I tie the girls’ heart. There is a way to tie a heart. When you tie them in that way, their hearts absolutely comes to you.

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N: There is something I told him when we worked together to shoot a video for Taiyo Tosho. And what I said even made myself feel euphoric… I thought: ”What good words.” (laugh) What I said was: ”If you want to be good at shibari, stop thinking of using vibrators and such things after tying. Just do shibari. Then you will become better at it.” Being greedy by having thoughts of doing something else after tying will not help you becoming good at it, no matter how long you keep tying, for 10 years or 20 years.

Y: I agree.

N: So, you won’t get better if you are planning on shooting fuck scenes or sex scenes. But… if you won’t get better at it, then of course I can keep staying on the top of this world. (laugh)

Y: No need to worry, I will not reach your level! (laugh)

S: Now it seems good time to end the dialog.

Comment from the Editor Haruka Shimazaki:

I think this was a dialogue with very rich content. I had to edit out quite a lot of it, since the amount of pages we can use for this is limited. What a waste. I think it’s my duty to publish the rest somehow. I even considered to sacrifice some of the other standing sections of this magazine for this dialogue. The reason why the content became so rich is that they are both on ”this side”. I mean they are both experts in this world. I believe the deep talk between them will be a treasure for enthusiasts.

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[Footnotes for the enthusiasts by KinbakuBooks / Bergborg:

* The video-shooting referred to in the report resulted in a video with the title 縄恋秘抄. This video has later been re-released on DVD (2001). This video not only has scenes with Nureki tying and scenes with Yukimura tying as mentioned in the text – in the last scene, they are tying (and untying) together, side by side. Indeed a ”must watch”. (The DVD is the one in the small square cover on the first image of this post. Do not confuse this film with the DVD with the same title done by Naka Akira with Itsuki Karin in 2015.)

* The video Jouen. The World of Kou Minomura (VHS in 1989) was released on DVD in 2013. Here is the title in Japanese for easier searching: 縄炎 ~美濃村晃の世界~. Ironically, when released on DVD, the 60 minutes were now percieved as too short, and a (totally unrelated) additional SM-video was added. (The cover can be seen in the first image of this post.)

* The video Graffiti 3 mentioned by Shimazaki has also been re-released on DVD, available in the Cinemagic collection with the title S&Mビデオグラフティ 第3集 (2015). (See image below.)

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Itoh Keijirō: ”A selection of representative seme scenes that appear in novels” (1953)

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Itoh Keijirō: 小説に現れた責の代表作選

(”A selection of representative seme scenes that appear in novels”) (Suikōdo 粹古堂1953)

I have always been fascinated by the poetic and fantasy aspects of Kinbaku, and recently obtained a book that opened a door onto some of the Edo-era literature that may well have inspired some of the pioneers in the development of Kinbaku. The book was written by a man named Itoh Keijirō. He is not a relative of Seiu, despite having the same last name, yet he and Seiu were very closely connected.

I had previously seen the following statement by Seiu (in a preface to a book with his photos [LINK]):

”It would seem that I’ve felt beautiful feelings looking at scenes of women in torment since June of 1891, when, as a ten-year-old boy, I listened to the Chiyohime snow-torment stories my mother told me. I imagined them vividly, and I now realize that I continued to fantasize about scenes of women’s torment every time it snowed. I would say that these things are a great joy for me.”

So you can imagine that it was very interesting for me to find a reference to Chiyohime in this new-to-me book (See Text #4 below). I am very curious about such literary stories of ”torment,” and how they have influenced our imagination when doing Kinbaku.

I owe this post to a friend in Tokyo, Alice Liddell, who not only brought this book to my attention but also helped me obtain a copy and did some translation of it. Thank you, Alice! She explains that Itoh Keijirō  (伊藤敬次郎, 1884–1965) was the real name of Itoh Chikusui (伊藤竹酔), the publisher of many of Itoh Seiu’s works released by his publishing house Suikōdo. Under a different company name (Chikusui Shobo), he also published works by important figures in the ”Ero Guro”-movement of the 1920s and 30s, including works on sexual perversion. He was jailed at least once for publishing improper material, and seems to have been traumatized by the experience, because after that he chose to avoid publishing illegal material. He is mentioned in Nureki Chimuo’s book Nihon Kinbaku Shashin-shi [LINK], for having sold a very large collection of photographs (taken at a satsuei-kai, or private meetings organized for the purpose of taking photographs) to Nureki and Minomura Kou, which were later published in Uramado magazine. He is also mentioned in Nureki’s bunko book, Kitan Kurabu to Sono Shuhen [LINK]. Nureki donated many of these photographs to the SM Library in Tokyo, which held a small exhibition of them in 2009 [LINK].

Here follows a summary of Itoh Keijirō’s foreword in the book, translated for us into English:

”In the early years of the Showa period, when [novelist and playwright] Tamura Nishio was running a restaurant in the Kanda area, there was a gathering one day, which I attended. It was there that I first met Seiu Sensei, and perhaps we hit it off, because I later published [Itoh Seiu’s books] 美人乱舞 (Bijin Ranmai) and  女三十六景  (Josanjū roku kei) and other of his works. After that, because of the war, I was not in contact with him for a long period, but recently I came to publish some more of his works, and as a result, everyone now seems to think of me a publisher of seme material. Subsequently, many people asked me to collect seme scenes from literature. Starting two or three years ago, without telling anyone, I collected various novels together, and woke early in the morning to read before work. I had to read the works from start to finish, which is no simple task when you are talking about old literature. I was incredibly happy when I was finally able to get a copy of 千代嚢媛七変化物語 (Chiyō-hime shichihengen monogatari) which I had searched for unsuccessfully for many years. This anthology of mine contains excerpts mostly from Edo-era novels from the Bunka years [January 1804 to April 1818], but when I had a little extra time, I extended my effort to include works of later times as well. In my research, I relied heavily on the E-iri bunko絵入文庫 [illustrated anthology series] published in Taisho 6 (1924). Some of the illustrations I’ve used are from different years, but I added them for reference.”

The book has printed inside 非買品 (not for sale), meaning it was not offered for sale as a commercial product. Perhaps the author only shared copies with interested friends? Or wished to avoid problems with the authorities?

To conclude this post, I share basic information for the thirteen texts and the eight illustrations chosen by the author, Itoh Keijirō. In general, he only states the book title and the author’s name, and sometimes the illustrator. In most cases, he did not provide more bibliographical information – all this has been added by Alice Liddell.

*

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Text #1: 優雲華物語, Udonge Monogatari, ”Tale of the Three-Thousand Year Flower” (1804), translated into English 1986 by Donald M. Richardson

Summary of scene described in the text: On Kurokami-yama (Black Hair Mountain), a female demon kills a pregnant woman and steals the unborn baby from her womb.

Author: 山東京博 (Santō Kyōden, late Edo novelist and ukiyo-e printmaker, 1761–1816)

Illustrator: 喜多武清 (Kita Busei, late Edo period painter, 1776–1858)

Description of illustration:

Two figures, a man and a woman (demon), near the body of a woman who has been stabbed with a sword and had her belly cut open.

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Text #2: 椿説弓張月, Chinsetsu yumi hari zuki (1807–11), ”The Crescent Moon”. This novel was adapted for the ”new” Kabuki as Chinzei Yumiharizuki by Mishima Yukio, and first performed in 1969. There are ukiyo-e prints based on this story, including versions by Utagawa Kuniyoshi and Tsukioka Yoshitoshi

Summary of scene described in the text: The character Butota is tortured and killed with bamboo needles by Princess Shiranui, or a demon who has occupied her body.

Author: 曲亭 馬琴(Kyokutei Bakin, real name Takizawa Okikuni, 1767–1848)

Illustrator: 葛飾 北斎 (Katsushika Hokusai, 1760–1849)

Description of illustration: A bleeding figure seated and tied to a post, being beaten by three women while four other women watch. The heads of two men are on a table in front of the watching women.

Text#3: 桜姫全伝曙草紙 , Sakura-hime zenden akebono sōshi (1805),”Complete Tales of the Cherry Blossom Princess: The Akebono Books”

Summary of scene described in the text: Sakura-hime (Cherry Blossom Princess) is killed and her body is taken away to a place called Toribeya. There, her corpse is cut open by a man named Seigen. (This story has been the basis for kabuki plays.)

Author: 山東京博 (Santō Kyōden, late Edo novelist and ukiyo-e printmaker, 1761–1816)

No illustration.

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Text #4: 千代嚢媛七変化物語, Chiyonōhime shichihenge monogatari (1809), ”Tales of Princess Chiyo”

Several different scenes are described, including one involving torture by fire and another in which someone is burned to death. This seems to be a revenge story involving the Satomi family.

Author: 振鷺亭 (Shinrotei, real name 猪狩貞居, Ikari Teikyo, date of birth unknown, died 1815)

Illustrator: 蹄斎北馬 Teisai Hokuba (Edo period illustrator, 1777–1844.)

Two illustrations: The first one is hard to see what is happening – possibly a man raping a woman? The second one: A woman tied up inside a temple, with a rope attached to a stone post. A man stands over her with two swords. Nearby, a man, perhaps her servant, is tied up with rope around his neck attached to a stone post.

Text #5: 浮牡丹全伝 Ukibotan zenden, ”Tales of the Floating Peony” (1809)

Summary of scene described in the text: A woman is starved by being denied food. This seme gets a note by Itoh Keijirō indicating that it is okite-seme 掟て責 , a legally sanctioned punishment.

Author: 山東京博 (Santō Kyōden, late Edo novelist and ukiyoe printmaker, 1761–1816)

No illustration.

Text #6: 本朝酔菩提, Honchō suibotai (1809)

Summary of scene described in the text: The sisters Kurenai and Midori are tortured by a bad woman.

Author: 山東京博 (Santō Kyōden, late Edo novelist and ukiyo-e printmaker, 1761–1816)

No illustration.

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Text #7: 長柄長者黄鳥墳, Nagarachōjya uguisuzuka

Summary of scene described in the text: A man named named Kanpudaijin (?) kills a woman named Umegaeda (?).

Author: 栗杖亭 鬼卵 (Ritsujotei Kiran, 1744–1823)

Illustrator one: 石田玉山 Ishida Gyousan.

Illustrator two: 大蘓芳年Taiso Yoshitoshi.

Two illustrations:

The first, by Ishida, shows a woman held roughly by the hair by a man as a woman with a pipe watches on.

The second, by Yoshitoshi, shows a woman pinned down by a man with a knife at her throat.

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Text #8: 絲桜春蝶奇談, Itozakura shūnchō kien (1809?)

Summary of scene described in the text: A character is captured and tortured by being bound and suspended.

Author: 曲亭 馬琴(Kyokutei Bakin, real name Takizawa Okikuni, 1767-1848)

Illustrator: 歌川 豊清 (Utagawa Toyokiyo, 1799–1820)

Description of illustration: A woman bound and suspended from a pine tree. Inside the house, a man fights with four other men.

Text #9: 血血郷談 , Beibei Kyōdan, ”Talk in Rural Dialect” (1813)

Author: 曲亭 馬琴(Kyokutei Bakin, real name Takizawa Okikuni, 1767–1848)

Summary of scene described in the text: A rape scene.

No illustration.

Text #10: 南総里見八犬伝, Minami Sōrimi Hakken-den, ”The Legend of the Eight Dog Samurai” (1814–1842) The tragic romance of a princess and the adventure of eight heroic samurai. Probably the most famous novel of the late Edo period.

Summary of scene described in the text: An adulteress is tortured.

Author: 曲亭 馬琴(Kyokutei Bakin, real name Takizawa Okikuni, 1767–1848)

No illustration.

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Text #11: 片輪車, Katawa-guruma, ”The Broken Wheel”

Summary of scene described in the text: A jealous woman tortures another woman by starving her and denying her food.

Author: 洛陽山人 Rakuyo ? (At the end of this section, Chikusui explains that he found this story in a story-book published in Meiji 22 (1889) but he could not establish who the author was.)

Illustrator: 梅蝶楼国(貞) = 歌川 国貞 (Utagawa Kunisada, 1823–1880 or 三代豊国 third Toyokuni)

Description of illustration: A starving woman is placed tied up in front of food she cannot eat.

Text #12: 山椒大夫, Sanshō Dayū, ”Sansho the Bailiff” (1915). A historical novel set in the Heian period. It follows two aristocratic children who are sold into slavery after their father, a virtuous governor, is banished and their mother sold to a brothel.

Summary of scene described in the text: Slaves are branded with an iron.

Author: 森鴎外 (Mori Ōgai, 1862–1922)

No illustration.

Text #13: 風流線 , Furyusen (?), ”Elegant Line”(?), (1902?)

Author: 泉鏡花 (Izumi Kyōka, 1873–1939)

Summary of scene described in the text: Someone is put into a prison room in the bottom of a place called the Floating Castle.

No illustration.